VIEWPOINTS: The fall concert was pretty fun…and free

Seddy Hendrinx headline the lineup.
Seddy Hendrinx headline the lineup.
Emory Davis

Last night’s Fall Carnival and Concert hosted by the Activities Programing Board (APB) featured a mixed-bag of a line up. It fit no theme other than diversity, but I found myself appreciating each act for what they brought to the table over the course of the evening.

Indigo Storm opened up the night’s slate, declaring that they were there to bring the “auditory energy.” They definitely dominated the soundwaves during their nearly hour-long set.

They played a wholehearted show. Being an opener is always a tough task. The crowd is usually still finding their groove — or not at the venue yet — and that leaves the opener with the double-duty of keeping the present crowd engaged while beckoning newcomers. 

Most of the scattered crowd milled around aimlessly during their set. That didn’t stop the band from shaking the ground that they stood on. This three-man crew was raucous, and although their dread-infused music felt tense at times, they had a casual stage presence that suggested they’ve played enough gigs to know what they’re doing. 

Their lead vocalist flexed a polished rock voice throughout the show. It’s a voice that comes off as proper and authoritative, each word enunciated with clarity and projecting forcefully. On top of a thick tapestry of rock instrumentation, I can’t help but summon mental images of a king rallying their army for siege in a fanciful kingdom.

Indigo Storm, a rock band from Lexington, opened the show. (Sydney Bellm)

I’m personally an advocate for harsher vocals in this pocket of music, but I can’t complain. This band has a well-defined sound and they pull it off well.

After performing a portfolio of their original tracks, the band transitioned into covers, playing heavy 90s rock hits. Perhaps the best part of their performance was when they asked the crowd if they knew the band Deftones. Even with a lean crowd, the response was a resounding “yes.” 

“Do you guys want sad, emo Deftones or heavy, screaming Deftones?” the lead singer asked. The response was mixed that time around, but it seemed like the crowd was pleased with the latter when the band played a rendition of “Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away).” 

This was the vocal recipe I was looking for.

Good Morning Bedlam was next in line to perform. The duo features two singer-instrumentalists, one who plays the upright bass and the other who switches between a guitar and ukulele. They also had a foot drum on stage that the guitarist operated. These two had glaring synergy on stage that drew everyone in. 

This act’s set had an innocent, feel-good essence to it that I couldn’t help but appreciate. They were having a great time on stage, and it transferred to the audience. Their music borders on sappy pretty much all the time. It’s not something I would ordinarily care to listen to, but it struck the perfect chord last night given the context: a brisk evening, moon out and friendly music that feels like it’s hugging you from all directions thanks to the resonant thumps of the bass and the foot drum.

Good Morning Bedlam brought the feel-good energy to the stage.

When Good Morning Bedlam left the stage, the production was at a standstill for a while. Seddy Hendrinx, a Florida-native rapper who headlined the show, was supposed to play at 8:30 p.m. 

The crowd dispersed after the second set, and the chance that the headliner was going to be performing for an empty parking lot didn’t seem far-flung. As the clock ticked onward, a new wave of people arrived and began entertaining themselves, mingling with each other and moving to the music. It was clear that people were excited for what was to come. 

Although Seddy Hendrinx was about an hour late — which irked some attendees — he was definitely fashionably late. At one point, a Mercedes-Benz zipped into the parking lot and parked directly in front of the stage. A passenger hopped out with a briefcase, climbed on stage and pulled out a laptop. Shortly after, he took the reins as the deejay and primed the crowd with hip hop hits from artists like Migos and Travis Scott. 

When the mysterious Mercedes-Benz returned later, the headliner appeared from the car and the crowd was told to surround the stage. This was the most unified the crowd had been all evening, and although it hadn’t grown much, being in close quarters charged the excitement. 

Seddy Hendrinx came on stage and immediately said he was coming on the ground to open up the show, delivering his performance to a swarm of faces and cell phone lights capturing the moment on video. He made crowd engagement a crux of his show, calling on fans to ad lib on cue in between songs later on.

Seddy Henrinx performed his opening track on the ground, face-to-face with the crowd. (Emory Davis)

His music hovers consistently in a pocket of R&B-inspired trap with flows that interweave raps and croons atop easygoing instrumentals sprinkled with drum claps. He rapped pretty much all of his lyrics, which may seem like a given but isn’t most of the time at today’s hip hop concerts. 

And he’s lucky that he knew his lyrics, because about halfway through his set, his back track was turned down audibly, to his frustration. He pleaded with the production team to raise the volume, but they didn’t budge much. He vented his annoyance to the crowd, which was a funny moment, and marched on checking songs off his setlist. 

Silence came at the end of his last song, prompting him to look back at his deejay and ask if that was it. It was clear that he was fed up and hurrying to finish what he had committed to doing. Although it was disappointing that the headliner gave the shortest of the night’s performances, the enthusiasm he showed at the start saved the show.

He generously took photos with everyone in the crowd, and that put the bow atop the Fall Carnival and Concert. It was about what I would have expected it to be like: nothing too exhilarating but still free, quality entertainment.